Man threw meat cleaver at police officer

PUBLISHED: 19:00 05 March 2020

Ipswich Crown Court   Picture: ARCHANT

Ipswich Crown Court Picture: ARCHANT

An Ipswich man who threw a meat cleaver at a policeman has been given a suspended prison sentence.

Daniel Middlemiss launched the cleaver at the officer who had attended his flat in Foxhall Road with paramedics after he claimed to have harmed himself, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

The officer was left with a small cut to the thigh after dodging the cleaver as it flew through a gap in a communal door, said Michael Crimp, prosecuting.

Middlemiss, 46, of Foxhall Road, admitted affray and assaulting an emergency worker in November last year.

Sentencing, Judge Rupert Overbuy said it was fortunate the police officer was not more seriously injured.

In addition to a nine month prison sentence suspended for two years Middlemiss was given a 30 day rehabilitation activity requirement.

Mr Crimp told the court that police officers and ambulance staff attended the defendant's address after he claimed to have taken an overdose.

Officers forced open a door because of concerns for his welfare and there was a confrontation between them and Middlemiss.

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When the police officers retreated and returned to their vehicle, Middlemiss appeared at a window, tapping a meat cleaver against the glass and holding it to his throat.

One of the officers got out and drew his Taser and went to speak to Middlemiss, who then appeared at the door with the cleaver in his hand.

The officer aimed his Taser through a gap in the door and told Middlemiss to drop the cleaver.

When the order was ignored, the officer fired his Taser and Middlemiss stumbled backwards, but then continued approaching with the cleaver raised.

"The officer dodged away before seeing the cleaver fly out of the gap, striking him to the leg," said Mr Crimp.

Middlemiss was handcuffed and taken to a police station.

Although the meat cleaver did not cut the officer's trousers he suffered a small cut to his right thigh.

Phillip Farr, for Middlemiss, said he had been at a "low mental ebb" at the time of the offences.

He said his client's mental health had deteriorated following a diagnosis of epilepsy eight years ago which had resulted in him losing his job as a scaffolder.

He said Middlemiss had expressed genuine remorse and required support in the community.

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